Dear Dr Love,I am in the middle of a break up with my boyfriend. I have moved on but I’m not sure he has. This would be difficult enough but I have a larger problem. I am very attracted to his best friend. It is more than physical attraction, I’m attracted to who he is. I sense that his friend is attracted to me but afraid to do anything about it. His old girlfriend is now dating his friend so he knows the pain this sort of situation can cause.How long should I wait before I confront him or should I confront him at all? I don’t want to hurt either my old boyfriend or my new love interest. Can this work out at all?Sincerely, Woman who fell for her boyfriend’s best friend
Yes this can work out. The fact that you are so sensitive to your boyfriend and new love interest’s feelings is wonderful. And, because of this sensitivity and caring, you should be able to move forward with the man of your choice, and do so in a sensitive way.Here’s how. You talk to your ex. , and tell him: ‘Since we are no longer dating, I was interested in dating your friend so and so. I had the feeling that this might hurt you and I wanted to talk with you about it first. ‘ You give him an opportunity to share all his feelings, listen and understand. After this is done, then, get on with your life.In other words, your job is not to take care of your ex. to the exclusion of your own needs. You must take care of and honor yourself first. In handling the matter the way I suggest, you don’t simply roll over your ex. , you listen and respect his feelings. . . but at the same time you don’t roll over yourself by denying your own desires. As for the new love interest, you can also be direct with him and say, ‘I know that you know how painful it is when a bestfriend dates your former lover. I am interested in getting to know you better. . . would your friendship with so and so (your ex. ) stand in our way?’Good luck. Dealing directly and addressing not running from the feelings is the trick to navigating this emotional minefield.